Sir Rhys was born in 1449. Upon his father's death he inherited the wealth of the Dinefwr estates and he bought Carew Castle from Sir Nicholas De Carew's grandson Edmund in 1480.
He vowed to King Richard III that Henry Tudor would only land in Wales ‘over my belly’.
However, when Henry landed in Mill Bay near Dale, Pembrokeshire in 1485, it is said that Sir Rhys eased his conscience by hiding under Mullock Bridge as Henry rode over.
From Mill Bay to the Battle of Bosworth
Rhys then journeyed to Bosworth taking a large army of Welshmen with him.
The battle of Bosworth on August 22 1485 was a turning point in British History.
King Richard III was killed in battle, allegedly at the hand of Rhys, and for his support of the Tudor cause, Rhys was knighted and made Governor of Wales by Henry.
To celebrate, he organised a Great Tournament to be held at Carew Castle in April 1507, spread over five days and attended by 600 nobles.
Rhys later also took part in Henry VIII’s invasion of France in 1513, and both Henry VII and Henry VIII placed implicit trust in him. Rhys ruled his corner of Wales like a king and died a natural death in February 1525.
More on Carew Castle's History
Ghosts of Carew Castle
Will you see the White Lady or the Barbary Ape? There are thought to be several ghosts haunting Carew.
Want to read more about Carew Castle?
Weddings and Civil Ceremonies
Step back in time and exchange your vows in the historic setting of Carew Castle
Book tickets for evening events at Carew Castle such as Open Air Theatre performances and evening Castle tours.
Shop and eat
There is a wide range of refreshments on offer in the Nest Tearoom as well as the Castle and Mill shops.
School Visits to Carew Castle
Carew welcomes school groups throughout the year introducing children to the tastes, smells and sights of life in a Castle.
Plan your visit
Carew Castle’s rich history spans over 2,000 years and tells of knights of the realm, kingmakers, Elizabethan intrigue and Civil War devastation.
Castle and Mill History
At the end of the 11th century, the Normans extended their conquest of England into Wales and Pembroke Castle became the centre of Norman rule in Sout...